TCSS undecided on school from April 1-3

Published 10:00 am Friday, March 20, 2020

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The Troup County Board of Education will wait a few more days before deciding when students will officially go back to the classroom based on current conditions.

Currently, students are set to return to school on April 1, based on an executive order signed by Gov. Brian Kemp last week shutting down all schools until March 31.

Since April 1 is a Wednesday, TCSS Superintendent Dr. Brian Shumate discussed with the board about how they want to handle the remaining three days of the week. Additionally, the school system’s spring break is scheduled the following week.

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Shumate said he wasn’t asking the board to make a decision Thursday night, but he wanted to give the board time to think about the situation. He said school staff is following the direction from the governor’s office and the state public health department.

“I’ve gone both ways, and I don’t think we’re ready to make a decision because there’s too much too many unknowns at this point,” Shumate said.

He said his first thought was that if it’s safe to go back to school April 1 to open the schools back up and let the students and parents return to a life of normalcy for a couple days. Then, go out on spring break.

The other option, Shumate said, is that if there’s still uncertainly on April 1, the school system could make it a four-week break with spring break included.

“To be 100 percent sure that we have done our best to keep the community safe,” Shumate said.

Board member Brandon Brooks recommended holding off on making a decision until about March 29 out of respect for everyone involved, while still keeping person-to-person contact to a minimum.

Shumate said he expects to have more direction from the state by the middle of next week.

He said he’s not sure if the school system would take the extra three days off if it would have to make it up or not.

“I’ve been on both sides of it in the last 48 hours, and I’ve talked myself into both of them,” Shumate said.